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Local Photos of Mississippi Travel Down the River in Exhibit Aug. 30-Sept. 11

Article by: Louise Jett, ljett@lc.edu
GODFREY - Lewis and Clark Community College will feature the Mississippi River Cities and Towns Initiative's (MRCTI) Mississippi River Photo Exhibit as it rolls down the river before concluding its journey in New Orleans, La.
 
The exhibit will run from Friday, Aug. 30, to Wednesday, Sept. 11, in the Hatheway Cultural Center Lobby (upstairs) on Lewis and Clark's Godfrey campus, and feature two photos by local artist and L&C adjunct faculty member Jeff Vaughn.
 
"The Mississippi River and the subsequent play of light on the river can be profoundly beautiful to the eye," Vaughn said. "With each venture, the interplay of the river, light and atmospheric effects are never quite the same. For a photograph to transcend documentation and pose an artistic vision is very challenging."
 
Contributed photos fall into three categories that capture the natural beauty of the river, life on the river and challenges of the river. The photographs will be on display nearest the location they depict along a 50-foot map of the Mississippi River, on which guests can walk.
 
The purpose of the exhibition is to celebrate the importance, culture and history of the Mississippi River, as well as draw attention to matters of mutual concern along its borders, including: river water quality and habitat restoration; flooding and floodplain issues; river-focused recreation and sustainable economies.
 
Vaughn's photos were made from locations on top of the bluffs overlooking the river on Principia College's property.
 
"The Mississippi has been a source of inspiration for photography and image making," Vaughn said. "I'm a painter as well and my paintings are made from my photographs. The play of light on the river and how the reflected light affects the environment makes the Riverbend a rather unique combination of water and land."
 
The photography exhibition, which opened in Washington D.C., served as a unique backdrop for a press briefing held by MRCTI mayors during their first meeting in the nation's capital.
 
MRCTI is a local government-led effort, housed at the Northeast-Midwest Institute and funded by the Walton Foundation, empowering the 10 states and more than 100 cities that border the Mississippi River to act for its continued prosperity, sustainability and economic growth.
 
Vaughn thinks the exhibit is a great chance for people to experience the Mississippi in a new way.
 
"It should be fascinating to see photographs that depict the various regions of the Mississippi," Vaughn said. "Without traveling the length of the river, one could experience, through the eye of the camera, artistic images of these locales."
 
The Mississippi River Photo Exhibit is sponsored by the Northeast-Midwest Institute, National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium and Lewis and Clark Community College.
 
The exhibition began in Dubuque, Iowa, and then traveled to Ft. Madison, Iowa, and St. Louis, Mo. After its stint in Alton, the exhibit will continue down the Mississippi River with stops in Osceola, Ark.; Memphis, Tenn.; Vicksburg, Miss. and New Orleans, La.
 
Those wanting more information can contact Louise Jett, L&C media specialist, at (618) 468-3220 or ljett@lc.edu.